Matching Items (36)

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The solo piano music of selected contemporary Canadian women composers: database, audio samples, and annotated bibliography

Description

Women's contributions to the history of Canadian music can be traced back to the late nineteenth century. However, women's achievements then, and still somewhat now, are often overlooked and as

Women's contributions to the history of Canadian music can be traced back to the late nineteenth century. However, women's achievements then, and still somewhat now, are often overlooked and as a result, piano solo works by Canadian women composers are largely unknown. The purpose of this study is to promote the wealth of solo piano repertoire composed by Canadian women, and to report the results in an accessible and comprehensible format for students, teachers, and performers at all levels. The research focuses on the most recent piano music by female composers born in or after 1950 whose compositions are available through the Canadian Music Centre (CMC) library. Brief biographies of included composers note their accomplishments, compositional output, and style characteristics. Annotations for the 103 works studied, written by twenty-six composers, include information about harmonic schemes, meters, tempos, durations, dates of the composition, CMC call number, level of difficulty, commissions, musical excerpts, premieres, and style characteristics. The style characteristics section includes composer's notes, technical challenges, musical characteristics, pedagogical values, and other pertinent information about a given piece. Since the goal of this project is to stimulate the awareness of music composed by Canadian women in a truly global sense, the research paper is supplemented by a website--www.canadianwomencomposers.com--that contains all the information found in the written portion of the annotations. This website also offers short audio samples of the compositions. The writer wishes to encourage all students, performers, and teachers to explore this resource, which reveals the richness of solo piano repertoire written by Canadian women composers.

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  • 2011

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The incorporation of Greek folk melodies in the piano works of Yannis Constantinidis: with special consideration of the 22 songs and dances from the Dodecanese

Description

Yannis Constantinidis was the last of the handful of composers referred to collectively as the Greek National School. The members of this group strove to create a distinctive national style

Yannis Constantinidis was the last of the handful of composers referred to collectively as the Greek National School. The members of this group strove to create a distinctive national style for Greece, founded upon a synthesis of Western compositional idioms with melodic, rhyhmic, and modal features of their local folk traditions. Constantinidis particularly looked to the folk melodies of his native Asia Minor and the nearby Dodecanese Islands. His musical output includes operettas, musical comedies, orchestral works, chamber and vocal music, and much piano music, all of which draws upon folk repertories for thematic material. The present essay examines how he incorporates this thematic material in his piano compositions, written between 1943 and 1971, with a special focus on the 22 Songs and Dances from the Dodecanese. In general, Constantinidis's pianistic style is expressed through miniature pieces in which the folk tunes are presented mostly intact, but embedded in accompaniment based in early twentieth-century modal harmony. Following the dictates of the founding members of the Greek National School, Manolis Kalomiris and Georgios Lambelet, the modal basis of his harmonic vocabulary is firmly rooted in the characteristics of the most common modes of Greek folk music. A close study of his 22 Songs and Dances from the Dodecanese not only offers a valuable insight into his harmonic imagination, but also demonstrates how he subtly adapts his source melodies. This work also reveals his care in creating a musical expression of the words of the original folk songs, even in purely instrumental compositon.

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  • 2011

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Keys to the future: a study of undergraduate piano education

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Classical pianists have struggled to reconcile personal artistic growth with the economic and cultural realities of a career as a musician. This paper explores the existing structure of North American

Classical pianists have struggled to reconcile personal artistic growth with the economic and cultural realities of a career as a musician. This paper explores the existing structure of North American undergraduate piano education and its development alongside sociological and cultural changes in the twentieth century. Through document study and interviews, I look at three different models of undergraduate piano curricula. Chapters One and Two explore the issues and history surrounding the traditional piano curriculum. Chapters Three and Four draw on interviews to study two different North American undergraduate curricula: a piano curriculum within a liberal arts environment of an American Conservatory-College, and a piano curriculum within a Canadian University Faculty of Music. Chapter Five concludes with a summary of these findings and potential recommendations for implementation. In this study, I suggest that changes to piano curricula were made because of a differing approach, one in which music is seen as an entrepreneurial vocation. These changes point to a discrepancy between what is being provided in the curriculum, and the actual skills that are needed in order to thrive in today's economy. Awareness of the constant flux of the current professional climate is necessary in order for pianists to channel their skills into the world. I theorize that changes in curricula were made in order to provide a better bridge for students to meet realistic demands in their career and increase their ability to impact the community.

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  • 2013

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Rapsodia camaleónica: a concerto for piano, trumpet and chamber orchestra

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This DMA project (in piano performance) consists of a concerto composed for trumpet and piano duo with orchestra and an analytical document that accompanies it. The text portion of this

This DMA project (in piano performance) consists of a concerto composed for trumpet and piano duo with orchestra and an analytical document that accompanies it. The text portion of this paper discusses the different compositional aspects of Rapsodia Camaleónica, including instrumentation, form, influences and the performers' perspective. The work is scored for a medium-sized orchestra: 2 flutes (flute 2 double piccolo), 2 oboes, 2 clarinets, 2 bassoons, horn, trombone, bass trombone, 4 percussionists (timpani, snare drum, crash cymbals, suspended cymbal, castanets, güiro or carrasca, shekere, whip, xylophone, triangle, pandeiro, tam-tam, wood blocks, 2 congas, glockenspiel, 3 tom-toms, bass drum) and strings. It is written in one multi-sectional movement with a duration of approximately twenty-three minutes. The full score is attached as an appendix. The influences in Rapsodia Camaleónica range from the western classical tradition to world music to urban dance music, all of which fuse together in a work that blends this eclectic mix into a unified whole. This composition is intended as an addition to the piano concerto repertoire from Latin America, which includes compositions by Carlos Chávez, Manuel María Ponce (both Mexican), Alberto Ginastera (Argentinian), Camargo Guarnieri and Heitor Villa-Lobos (both Brazilian). It is the composer's desire to add a Colombian piece of universal appeal to this list.

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  • 2012

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The imitation of orchestral effects and the expressive role of the piano in Richard Strauss's Sonata for violin and piano in E-flat major, op. 18: a performance guide for pianists

Description

The Sonata for Violin and Piano in E-flat Major, Op. 18 (1888), was the last major work of chamber music by Richard Strauss (1864-1949). Although for only two instruments, the

The Sonata for Violin and Piano in E-flat Major, Op. 18 (1888), was the last major work of chamber music by Richard Strauss (1864-1949). Although for only two instruments, the Sonata reflects Strauss's growing interest in symphonic writing both in his tone poems and orchestral songs, anticipating his style of orchestration and his expressive use of tone colors. This study examines instances of orchestral writing in the piano and makes suggestions for their performance. An overview of Strauss's compositions, from his early chamber music to the `heroic' symphonic works, places the Sonata in context. An analytical description of each of the Sonata's three movements shows the structure and content of this large work and provides the framework for examination of the orchestral effects in the piano. Comparison of excerpts from the Sonata with passages from Strauss's orchestral writing in Don Juan (1889), "Cäcilie," "Morgen!," and "Lied der Frauen" leads to suggestions for the collaborative pianist of ways to re-create the various orchestral effects.

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  • 2014

Six Chinese piano pieces of the twentieth century: a recording project

Description

This paper describes six representative works by twentieth-century Chinese composers: Jian-Zhong Wang, Er-Yao Lin, Yi-Qiang Sun, Pei-Xun Chen, Ying-Hai Li, and Yi Chen, which are recorded by the author on

This paper describes six representative works by twentieth-century Chinese composers: Jian-Zhong Wang, Er-Yao Lin, Yi-Qiang Sun, Pei-Xun Chen, Ying-Hai Li, and Yi Chen, which are recorded by the author on the CD. The six pieces selected for the CD all exemplify traits of Nationalism, with or without Western influences. Of the six works on the CD, two are transcriptions of the Han Chinese folk-like songs, one is a composition in the style of the Uyghur folk music, two are transcriptions of traditional Chinese instrumental music dating back to the eighteenth century, and one is an original composition in a contemporary style using folk materials. Two of the composers, who studied in the United States, were strongly influenced by Western compositional style. The other four, who did not study abroad, retained traditional Chinese style in their compositions. The pianistic level of difficulty in these six pieces varies from intermediate to advanced level. This paper includes biographical information for the six composers, background information on the compositions, and a brief analysis of each work. The author was exposed to these six pieces growing up, always believing that they are beautiful and deserve to be appreciated. When the author came to the United States for her studies, she realized that Chinese compositions, including these six pieces, were not sufficiently known to her peers. This recording and paper are offered in the hopes of promoting a wider familiarity with Chinese music and culture.

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  • 2012

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Nineteenth-century Performance and Editorial Practice: A Study of Beethoven's Sonata in C-sharp minor, Op. 27 No. 2

Description

During the nineteenth century, it was common for pianists to publish their own editions of Beethoven’s piano sonatas. They did this to demonstrate their understanding of the pieces. Towards the

During the nineteenth century, it was common for pianists to publish their own editions of Beethoven’s piano sonatas. They did this to demonstrate their understanding of the pieces. Towards the end of the century, musicians focused their attention on critical editions in an effort to reproduce the composer’s original intention. Unfortunately, this caused interpretive editions such as those created in the nineteenth century to fade from attention. This research focuses on situating these interpretive editions within the greater discourse surrounding the editorial development of Beethoven’s piano sonatas. The study opens with the critical reception of Beethoven, his Sonata in C-sharp minor, Op. 27 No. 2, also known as the “Moonlight” Sonata, the organology of the nineteenth-century fortepianos and the editorial practices of subsequent editions of the piece. It also contextualizes the aesthetic and performance practice of nineteenth-century piano playing. I go on to analyze and demonstrate how the performance practices conveyed in the modern Henle edition (1976) differ from those in selected earlier interpretive editions. I will conclude with an assessment of the ways in which nineteenth-century performance practices were reflected by contemporary editions.

This study compares the First edition (1802) and seven selected editions of Beethoven’s “Moonlight” Sonata by Ignaz Moscheles (1814), Carl Czerny (1846), Franz Liszt (1857), Louis Köhler (1869), Hugo Riemann (1885), Sigmund Lebert and Hans von Bülow (1896), and Carl Krebs (1898) with the Henle edition. It covers the tempo, rubato, articulations, phrasing, dynamics, fingerings, pedaling, ornamentation, note-stem and beaming, pitch, and rhythm. I evaluate these editorial changes and performance practice to determine that, compared to modern practice, the 19th century fostered a tendency of applying rubato, longer slurs, diverse articulations, and expanded dynamic range. Furthermore, the instructions of fingerings, pedaling and ornamentation became more detailed towards the end of the century.

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  • 2020

Pacific Suite: A Work in Four Movements for Solo Piano

Description

Pacific Suite (2016) is a four-movement work for solo piano composed by the author of this paper, Holly Kordahl, that incorporates elements of several musical idioms, including Impressionism, tintinnabuli (as

Pacific Suite (2016) is a four-movement work for solo piano composed by the author of this paper, Holly Kordahl, that incorporates elements of several musical idioms, including Impressionism, tintinnabuli (as in the music of Arvo Pärt), post-modernism, minimalism and improvisation. This Doctorate of Musical Arts project consists of a descriptive paper, analysis, score and recording. The piece features varying levels of performer independence and improvisation along with notated music. Each movement is named after a different environment of the Pacific Ocean: Great Barrier Reef, Mariana Trench, Sunlit Zone, and Bikini Atoll.

Pacific Suite is engaging to mature pianists and accessible to students. The score of Pacific Suite is a blank canvas in some ways; almost all dynamics, tempi, pedaling, and fingerings are to be determined by the performer. The first movement, Great Barrier Reef, presents different musical vignettes. The second movement, Mariana Trench, requires the performer to improvise extensively while following provided instructions. The third movement, Sunlit Zone, asks the performer to improvise on a theme of Debussy. The final movement, Bikini Atoll, illustrates events of nuclear testing at Bikini Atoll in the 1940s.

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  • 2020

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Alarm: A Chamber Ensemble Piece for Nine Instruments

Description

It is not a tremendous exaggeration to suggest the world almost ended on September

26, 1983. At the command center for the Soviet Union's Oko nuclear early warning

system a report came

It is not a tremendous exaggeration to suggest the world almost ended on September

26, 1983. At the command center for the Soviet Union's Oko nuclear early warning

system a report came in stating that six hostile missiles were launched from the United

States. The commanding officer at the center, Stanislav Petrov, was convinced that the

missiles were a false alarm, and indeed the Oko system had malfunctioned. Petrov was

justified in reporting the attack to his superiors, which would have likely resulted in

retaliatory strikes from the Soviet Union, leading to nuclear war. This relatively obscure,

but immensely important moment in history is the inspiration for Alarm.

This work is not a direct retelling of Petrov's story, but a musical journey imagining the

many emotions this man must have been feeling. The piece is also not a look at the

Cold War politics surrounding the event, but a study of a choice, one of massive

consequences. The most significant element in Alarm is tension. The goal of the

opening statement of the piece, played by the brass, is to immediately transport the

listener into this world on the edge. This motive is developed throughout the work, and

serves as a binding agent as the music evolves. Another crucial element is the

oscillating staccato notes usually played by high-pitched instruments. This is implying

stress one might feel- whether it be an alarm going off or time running out. As the piece

seems to reach its breaking point just past the halfway mark, Petrov makes his choice.

The final part of the work is decidedly more peaceful, emphasized by the "Tranquillo"

and "Calmo" descriptors, but there is a consistent dark undertone to Alarm. Petrov's

story is bittersweet- he is a hero, but his accomplishments were swept under the rug by

Soviet leadership, humiliated by their nuclear system's failure. The near disaster in 1983

has barely been addressed by the world at large, even as the threat of nuclear war

seems to fade. When the next nuclear crisis arises, what choices will be made?

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  • 2020

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Performance Guide: Henry Cowell’s Three Irish Legends and Six Ings, and John Cage’s The Perilous Night

Description

This research will explore the compositional approaches of Henry Cowell and John Cage to reveal piano techniques for the practice and performance of selected works. The discussion will focus on

This research will explore the compositional approaches of Henry Cowell and John Cage to reveal piano techniques for the practice and performance of selected works. The discussion will focus on Henry Cowell’s Three Irish Legends and Six Ings, as well as John Cage’s The Perilous Night. An important contribution of Cowell was to further the use of tone clusters, applied in his Three Irish Legends by playing directly with the forearm, fists, and palm. Cowell’s Six Ings employ rhythmic experimentation, particularly in the first, second, and sixth pieces. He also uses tone color to portray specific programmatic features. John Cage greatly advanced the prepared piano from its earliest beginnings, as evidenced significantly in The Perilous Night. The present study will include advice on piano preparation, along with performance challenges and solutions.

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  • 2020